Placing students in the Least Restrictive Environment
By: Adrienne Woolley
Section 1: Review of Service Delivery Models Section 3: Classroom Section 2: The Accommodations &Placement Decision ModificationsSection 4: Monitoring Section 5: Tips for the Students in the General Education General Education Teacher Setting
• General Class Full-Time• Special Education Class Part-Time or Pullout Program• Special Class Full-Time
Inclusion model – the student is placed and receivesinstruction in a general education classroom for most or allof the day. Advantages: Disadvantages: • Students gain the benefits of • Some teachers find it difficult to being fully included with their have another teacher in their peers. classrooms. • Scheduling time to meet with • Students receive one-on-one children in many classes can be or small group instruction difficult. geared to their individual learning needs. • Some children need more support than short visits from the special • All students and teachers learn education teacher can provide. about diversity and • Most teachers do not have enough accommodating to individual time to effectively teach to all the needs. needs in the classroom.
Resource or pullout program - the student is placed andreceives instruction in a special education classroom forpart of the school day and is mainstreamed in a generaleducation setting the remainder of the school day. Advantages: Disadvantages: • Students gain the social benefits • Students sometimes miss of being with their peers in a interesting or important lessons mainstream classroom. when they are pulled out. • Students receive one-on-one or • Students may feel stigmatized by small group instruction geared to being pulled out. their individual learning needs. • Scheduling can be difficult. • All students and teachers learn about diversity and • Sometimes students cannot keep accommodating to individual up with the work of the needs. mainstream class.
Students receive their primary instruction in the specialeducation classroom on a full-time basis but are usuallymainstreamed into nonacademic classes with nondisabledpeers. Advantages: Disadvantages: • Small class size. • Students can be isolated from the rest of the school. • Students get curriculum tailored exactly to their needs. • Students may feel stigmatized by being in a “special class.” • Students spend most of their time with a trained special education • Students do not get the social teacher. benefits of being included with their peers. • Students who cannot succeed in a mainstream class may do well in • It is expensive to have one this setting. teacher for a small number of students.
The Special Educatorshould collect thefollowing prior to the IEPmeeting:• School attendance information• Discipline information• Current levels of academic performance• Current status of medical condition (if applicable)• Classroom observation information• General education teacher summary report(s)
Accommodations“The change in input and output processes in teaching andassessment, such as the format of instructional presentationsand test practice and/or preparation activities, the setting for atest, the scheduling or timing of instruction or assessment, andthe response format called for in an assessment procedure”(Adams (1997) as cited in Polloway, Epstein, & Bursuck, 2003).Modifications“The concept of modifications refers to changes in contentand/or standards. In curricular areas, modifications could involvechanges in content and/or skill expectations for different groupsof students. A key testing modification would be limiting theamount of material upon which a student is evaluated”(Polloway, Epstein, & Bursuck, 2003).
The special education teacher must monitor all of thestudents on his or her caseload, even when they areplaced within the general education setting.
Students with Specific Students with Students with OtherLearning Disabilities Behavioral Disorders Health Impairments• Write all homework • Establish clear rules • Be alert to signs of or class assignments for the class & post fatigue in the on the board. them. student.• Conference with • Reinforce individual • Use teaching student frequently. students when they materials &• Provide shortened follow the rules. activities that are assignments. • Ignore inappropriate behavior when age appropriate.• Allow student to possible. • Ensure that all underline or highlight • Develop a “safe plan” areas of the room in textbook.• Give positive for times when the are accessible. reinforcement often. student may lose • Use teaching• Modify tests or control. materials that can quizzes according to • Provide a structured be adapted to the environment. physical needs of the student’s IEP. • Maintain accurate the student. reports of classroom behavior.
Students with ADD or Students with Hearing Students with SpeechADHD Impairments and/or Language• Preferential seating • Talk facing the Impairments• Clear & concise rules student. • Remember that and consequences that • Teacher should not students with speech are posted in the room. stand in glaring light or language• Avoid heavy doses of as it interferes with impairments often seatwork. effective lip reading. have difficulty with• Consider using study • Use complete but brief communication. carrels for times that sentences when giving • Incorporate activities student may need a instructions. break from distractions. in class that allow • Reduce background the student to• Utilize visual & verbal noise as much as prompts & cues to practice skills possible. mastered in therapy. maintain on-task • Make sure to have the behavior. • Create a supportive student’s attention• Immediately give environment. before giving positive reinforcement • Build self-confidence instructions. for appropriate in all children. • Use visual aids when behavior. possible.
Shelton, C. F. , & Pollingue, A. B. (2009). The exceptionalteacher’s handbook: The first-year special educationteacher’s guide to success. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin. Photo Credits: Page 2: http://wendyzshandsonlearning.blogspot.com/2009/01/ basic-tips-on-using-manipulatives.html